Lately I've watched, on numerous occasions, as a friend and colleague clicks on spell check at the end of her writing projects. Although spell check is highly recommended and using it a fairly standard practice, I must admit that each time I see her use it, I'm a little surprised. The surprise comes because of my own mental association with our shared writing skills. Although I'm not saying I write as well as she does, I will say that we both write rather a lot and we both do it better than, well, let's say our "non-writerly counterparts."
Meanwhile, I'm a good speller. It's just a fact. I can spell nearly any standard word you throw at me, without much of a struggle at all. And so the whole spell check phenomenon never really caught on with me. It just didn't seem necessary. Although in the light of day, admitting this "out loud," as it were, that sounds stupid.
Yesterday I discovered the error of my ways. It's not necessary because I can't spell that I discovered how much I need to be using spell check. My thinking was all wrong. It's necessary because I type fast and sometimes I also type sloppily and while being distracted by other surrounding activities. A great number of distractions. Having just written a document, I discovered that, while checking the end result of something I'd read several times already, that I misspelled Three Common Words I Completely Know How To Spell. THREE!!! Not only did I misspell them, but I also didn't realize they were spelled wrong when I read through the document. All those times.
Which, of course, most of you have known all along: that spell check isn't just there for those who can't spell, but also for my people - We Of The Easily Distracted And Dyslexic Flying Fingers.
So from now on I'm going to be using spell check on a more frequent basis. When I remember, that is. (They tell me it takes a while to create new habits.)
No doubt my readers will be appreciative.